Proud families, students, guests and officials celebrated academic achievement Aug. 8, when the Greater Oro Valley Chamber of Commerce Foundation recognized the six students who each received $1,500 Mayor Steve Engle Memorial Scholarships for 2019.
Everyone gathered for breakfast at The Overlook, part of the Oro Valley Community Center. This year’s recipients are:
Arianna Chavez, Mountain View High School, who plans to study behavioral health sciences at Grand Canyon University. She wrote: “I believe I represent a greater entity than just myself. I represent thousands of other Hispanic students who dream of reaching the impossible, who aspire to be someone more than everyone thinks or believes to be capable.”
Reilly Heivilen, Mountain View High School, who plans to study biology and Japanese at Northern Arizona University. Whatever the task, she said: “I will give it my all and do the best I can.”
Kyle Nicolai, Ironwood Ridge High School, who will study computer science at Pima Community College and Northern Arizona University. Kyle was described by a coach at Ironwood Ridge as “one of the hardest-working young men I have had the privilege to coach.”
Nour Rafeq, Mountain View High School, who is ready to attend the University of Arizona. Nour, who brought her proud grandmother, mother and aunt to the breakfast, is an Iraqi refugee who learned English on her own. She is “one of the most unforgettable students I have worked with in my 30-plus years of public education,” a teacher said.
Noah Sheridan, Pusch Ridge Christian Academy, who will start at Pima College with studies in cybersecurity. Noah is described as the “unsung hero type,” calling no attention to himself but consistently doing the right thing in all aspects of his life.
Macy Young, Mountain View High School, who plans to study pre-medicine at Arizona State University and become a dermatologist. She plans to make “a positive difference in someone’s life every single day.”
Mayor Steve Engle was one of Oro Valley’s first mayors. While in office, he would provide scholarships to deserving, needy students from his own pocket. After Mayor Engle died, the Oro Valley Chamber took over the project. For several years now, Engle scholarships have been provided through the Chamber’s 501c3 Foundation.
Among the special guests on hand were Oro Valley Mayor Joe Winfield, councilmember Bill Rodman, Oro Valley Chief of Police Danny Sharp, commanders Kara Riley and Chris Olson and constituent services representative Jessica Hynd.
Dave Perry is the President and CEO of the Greater Oro Valley Chamber of Commerce.